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Dave Epstein

Snow is on the way! Here’s what to expect from this weekend’s storm

Craig F. Walker/Globe Staff

Our work week will end with sunshine and seasonably cold temperatures. The weekend will be snowy for the first time this season, with a widespread snowfall.

The storm system will move up the coastline and bring a period of precipitation to the area beginning mid-morning Saturday to early afternoon, and lasting through much of Saturday night. The heaviest precipitation will occur from 11 a.m. through 10 p.m. Saturday. Beyond that, there will be some lighter snow.

The moisture from the storm is actually the same moisture that brought early snow to Texas yesterday. Some energy from Canada will merge with that moisture off the coast Saturday and form our area’s coastal storm. This isn’t going to turn into a blockbuster snowfall, but a few places may go above the 3 to 6 inch range I am predicting.


Moisture was already streaming north from the southern jet stream early Friday. (COD Weather)

Rain Versus Snow

The other forecasting challenge with the storm is the rain-snow line. Cape Cod and the Islands will likely stay all rain and any snow that occurs will likely be minimal. The tip of Cape Ann will also likely end up with some rain, although there could be a slushy coating to a couple of inches.

South of Boston along South Shore roads, the precipitation may flip back and forth. There will be lesser amounts there as well. If the storm jogs a little to the west or east, then the rain could push inland a bit more or the snow could push toward the coast. Those of you in that area of the state should be aware that the forecast could change.

The snow will be on the heavier and wetter side. You have probably noticed that some of the trees, especially Japanese maples, are holding on to their leaves right now. This is because November’s dramatic cold stopped the abscission process and left the leaves, which could now catch some of the heavier snow and do some damage. It isn’t a bad idea to very gently shake the snow off during the storm if it looks like your trees are getting really weighed down.


This isn’t the type of storm that’s going to shut down Logan Airport or create long-term travel issues. This is a typical December moderate snow storm. It’s a big weekend for holiday parties and you should give yourself extra time to get where you’re going. Since there hasn’t been any snowfall yet, there’s no large snow banks to deal with, but roads will be slick much of Saturday afternoon and evening.

The bulk of the accumulation will occur from the middle part of Saturday through about 11 p.m. Thereafter, there could be some lighter snow showers, but Sunday will see clearing skies and cold temperatures.

More Snow And Cold

There is another storm we need to watch Tuesday and Wednesday. However this one materializes, whether it’s a few snow or rain showers or a more impactful storm, much colder arctic air will arrive to conclude next week. Temperatures will be well below normal for several days.